Over the last few days there has been speculation on why Natural News (naturalnews.com) was banned by Google. On Feburary 22, 2017 approximately 140,000 pages related to Natural News was removed from Google’s search listing. Some speculated it was a conspiracy against conspiracy sites. Others claimed it was Google’s way of cracking down on fake news. Natural News claimed they were removed because “Fascist Google begins PURGE of pro-Trump websites as prelude to massive false flag or coup attempt,” which also is not true.
Before I reveal the real reason they were blacklisted, I want to familiarize you with Natural News. Media Bias/Fact Check has Natural News listed in our Conspiracy/Pseudoscience category. The reason for this is because Natural News is a well known purveyor of both medical/nutritional quackery and conspiracies. While Google has stated they will crack down on fake news, they have never stated they would remove web sites. The primary way they will fight fake news is by removing Google’s Ad campaigns from those sites. The real reason Natural News was banned is due to a Google Webmaster violation. Google has rules in place that must be followed by all websites.
According to Search Engine Land: Google has confirmed the site was not removed for its political views but rather because of a webmaster guidelines violation. A Google spokesperson told Search Engine Land: “We don’t comment on individual sites, but if we find that a site violates one or more of our Webmaster Guidelines we may take manual action against it. For webmasters who have questions about their own sites, our Webmaster team provides support through platforms such as the Webmaster Forums. Once a site has remedied the problem, the webmaster can submit the site for reconsideration.”
In summary, Natural News is a very questionable source, but they were only temporarily removed due to a violation of terms. Once this violation is corrected you can expect to see Natural News listed once again.